8 Great Reasons to Teach Yoga

Recently I read a wonderful article with eight important quotes from eight beautiful yogis. As a fellow yoga teacher and a yogi, I had to share them here with you.

Every day we go to work. Eat lunch. Commute Home. Work Out. Make Dinner. Repeat. Do you ever stop to think about WHY you do the things you do? Are you eating the quinoa salad because you’ve made it a million times already, or are you thoughtfully choosing the ingredients and preparing the meal with care? In other words, do you do things simply because it’s become routine or is there a deeper intention behind your actions?

This year, I’ve been questioning why I do certain things. And of course yoga was called into question. In a recent Wanderlust Journal article, I asked Wanderlusters why they do yoga. In the same vein, I was also curious about the yogis who had taken another step from student to teacher. So I interviewed a handful of Wanderlust teachers with one question, “Why do you teach yoga?”

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1. To help others feel good
“I teach yoga because it makes people feel good about their bodies. I’ve learned to accept myself more, and I want to give that to other people, especially in the dance world where it can be very discouraging sometimes.”
– Beau Campbell, dancer and yoga teacher

 

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2. To be a better student
“I teach yoga because I want to be a better student. You learn so much when you teach; it’s a never-ending process of learning by teaching. There’s a certain point you start to stagnate as a student, and you just go out there and you teach to learn.”
– Schuyler Grant, co-creator of Wanderlust

 

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3. To help others achieve goals
“I didn’t actually choose to teach yoga to be honest. I had friends who wanted to practice yoga but they were too scared to go to a yoga studio. So I offered to show them some things and then set up a “class.” I taught five of my friends in my basement and then five turned into ten and many more. I just wanted my friends to practice yoga, and then through that intention to help my friends accomplish what they wanted to accomplish, I became a yoga instructor.”
– Matt Giordano, martial artist and yoga teacher

 

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4. To allow others to choose what they need to learn
“I don’t think I teach anything. I think I hold a space for people to experience an honest, authentic, and pure version of themselves through me being radically honest, authentic and pure. If there’s anything I teach it’s how to hold a space to facilitate and people around you choose what they’re going to learn.”
– Cameron Shayne, founder of Budokon University

 

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5. To help others connect to a higher consciousness
“I teach yoga to serve the best way I can so people can learn how to connect to their own highest consciousness and connect with their inner being.”
– Nirinjan Kaur Khalsa, Kundalini teacher

 

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6. To send out love
“I teach yoga because there’s this force out there called love. At the end of our yoga practice we turn our bodies, minds, and hearts into this antenna that picks up the signal which we can then radiate out as positive energy and nothing in the world matters more than that.”
– Eoin Finn, founder of Blissology

 

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7. To fulfill a destiny
“I teach yoga because it pulled me to teach yoga. It was one of those things where my teacher of fifteen years said, ‘You will teach yoga.’ And I teach yoga because it is in service to my very practice because it reminds me to remain a student.”
– Janet Stone, vinyasa yoga teacher

 

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8. To keep it real
“I teach yoga to bring more ‘real’ into the world.”
– Alex Mazerolle, founder of Girlvana

 

Best Fictional Films for Style Inspiration – Kinks & Winks

Today I will continue to introduce some very stylish films. Some of them will be slightly kinkier than the ones in my Personal Favorites (okay, maybe not The Dreamers) but equally amazing.

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And God Created Woman (1956)

The 60s was not complete without Brigitte Bardot. She was so uninhibited, free, innocent yet insouciantly provocative all at the same time. She shook up the post-war conformist France with body-conscious garments — button-front shirtdresses, boatneck wiggle dresses and simple white polo necks paired with hip-hugging pencil skirts, exemplifying the sexy looks that left just enough to the imagination.

 

Belle de Jour (1967)

Yves Saint Laurent’s designs were the epitome of ‘classic modernity’. He successfully captured the haute bourgeois chic by designing some amazing pieces — tailored sheaths, a safari dress, a vinyl trench, and sumptuous rounded coats for the stunning Catherine Deneuve. Although Deneuve was never my favorite French actress, she was the embodiment of quintessential femininity and exquisite sophistication. Instead of showing the free spirit and romance of the archetypal French woman, she always played stern and controlled roles with an aura of mystery. Nonetheless, the film is a must-see for fashion addicts.

 

9 and 1/2 Weeks (1986)

This film is the 80s version of Fifty Shades of Grey but 10 times better. Basinger was the ultimate embodiment of 80s’ cosmopolitan fashion and minimalist simplicity. The tousled waves, red-stained lips, darkly lined and smudged eyes — or what I like to call, the morning-after look — is all the rage now. And she rocked the modern working girl ensembles as well as the slouch combo of a banker’s button-down with EG Smith Boot socks — alongside a devilishly attractive Mickey Rourke.

 

In the Mood for Love (2000)

Wong Kar-wai has made an abundance of highly stylized films (2046, My Blueberry Nights, etc.) and is one of the very few reasons why I still hold hope for Chinese filmmakers (artistically speaking, not commercially for obvious reasons). Regarded as a milestone in Chinese film history, this movie was a major stylistic influence on the past decade of cinema. In this melancholy tale of love and loneliness, Maggie Cheung impeccably showcased the grace and sensuality of qipao (also known as cheongsam) with her slender figure and fragile beauty, creating a nostalgic ambiance and an aesthetically pleasing viewing experience. The opalescent silks and floral prints subtly juxtapose the quiet passion embedded between the characters.

 

Mulholland Dr. (2001)

David Lynch is a bonafide genius because this was the film that changed the course of film history and the way I watch movies. Hell, the first thing I did after getting my Nissan was going to Mulholland Dr. I practically risked my life by driving on the meandering road and that was how much I loved this movie. The cinematography, the score, the underlying message, the evocative acting, and of course the costumes complemented one another immaculately, making it one of the cinematic masterpieces of the 21st century. Dark locks, crimson lips, white button-down, halter dresses, and Laura Harring’s cheekbones represented the true essence of Hollywood glamour.

 

A Single Man (2009)

Two words to sum up the film – Tom Ford. He translated his immaculate taste beautifully to cinema with fastidious attention to detail and filled the poignant moments with an exquisite style and elegance. We see throughout the film the white oxford shirts – the very image of quality and refinement, classic thick-framed glasses – hallmark of American hipsters, corduroy jackets – a nice boho touch of the 60s, and of course, Italian style custom-tailored suits. In short, the film is an aesthetic perfection.

 

Some of the films have been proven a bit too much for some. So brace yourselves. 😉

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Best Fictional Films for Style Inspiration – Personal Favorites

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As I have mentioned in Bio, I am, without a doubt, one of the biggest movie geeks I know. It doesn’t really come as a surprise since I studied cinema at USC (which has one of the best film schools in the world). I tend to view films from a more analytical perspective (I know, sounds pretentious…). But today I am just going to pile up a list of my favorite films that have amazing fashion pieces and left me in awe. Hopefully, they will inspire you in some way too 🙂 .

Funny Face (1957)

Watching Funny Face was like flipping through a 50s high-end fashion magazine. Playing a NYC bookstore frump turned Parisian fashion model, Audrey Hepburn spellbinded us with her sweet nature and glamorous exterior. Her personal couturier Givenchy designed a series of couture gowns and outfits for her to wear in a variety of Parisian scenes which gave us one of the very first looks at Haute Couture on the silver screen.

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“Take the picture! Take the picture!”
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Givenchy bridal gown – beginning of tea-length wedding dresses

The crazy dance scene featured the turtleneck, sleek black pixie pants, and foot-friendly loafers which successfully captured the emerging beatnik-style zeitgeist. Even in the simplest outfits, Hepburn never failed to dazzle us with her elegance and signature elfin beauty. I guess that she just possessed the “bozazz”.

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It’s okay to kick my legs high cuz I’m wearing really chic pants.

Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961)

Casting Audrey Hepburn as a “socialite” (code for high-class prostitute) seemed like a bizarre idea but I’d have to say that she nailed it. She played an incredibly chic and playful character with a quirky sense of humor and alluring idiosyncrasy , yet extremely sorrowful vulnerability. And the movie debuted with the most iconic fashion image in history – Givenchy’s long black gown with the demi-lune cut-out at the back, accessorized by the over-the-top costume pearls.

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The iconic look

Hepburn wore sunglasses most of the time in the film because they had prescribed lenses and Miss Golightly apparently did not like wearing glasses. But a pair of Ray-Bans that flatter your face shape would add chicness to anything else you wear, wouldn’t they? And the film showcased the trench, turtleneck, oversize button-downs, and ballet flats which are definitely all wardrobe essentials.

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Hangovers are best hidden behind a huge pair of sunglasses
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Miss Holly Golightly teaches us the more important things in life – Sleep and Alcohol

Almost Famous (2000)

While celebrating the age of rock and roll and ’70s counterculture with this awesome picture, Cameron Crowe provided us a feast for our eyes with a lookbook of the raddest pieces of the 70s. Penny Lane’s burly shearling coat is the iconic 70s look. People still dress like her for Halloween as well as in daily life. Some of our other favorite items – aviators, crop tops, frilly dresses, flared jeans, faded band t-shirts – were seen throughout the film. And all the characters presented undoubtedly the perfect examples of the most wearable vintage looks.

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Interrelation of pop culture and fashion
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Fairuza Balk in her rainbow vest inspired by Janis Joplin
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Oh, the 70s…

Malena (2000)

When I watched the film for the first time at 14, I was shocked by Monica Bellucci’s beauty! To this day, I still am. At the age of 52, she looks absolutely stunning! In Malena, playing a war widow during WWII, Bellucci showed her effortlessly chic style with the rotating billowy floral print dresses and tailored 40s silhouettes. The outfits perfectly complemented her ethereal elegance and ultra-feminine temperament.

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First look of Malena
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Cigarettes – a girl’s best accessories

The Dreamers (2003)

This is oddly one of my favorite films by Bernardo Bertolucci despite the fact that some say it is just two hours of really attractive people talking about pretentious films while smoking, and having really weird sex. (Wait, that actually sounds pretty awesome.) Anyways, Eva Green impressed us by encapsulating the style of a broody Parisienne in the 60s with a wardrobe of crushed velvet dresses, romantic florals, and of course—berets.

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Humans are either fascinated or repulsed by others’ nonconformity.
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It’s a dangerous game you play there, darling.
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Like I care…

The Devil Wears Prada (2006)

I became obsessed with the movie after I watched it for the first time at the age of 13. I did not get the main point of the film at all which is: Go after your dream regardless what others say and do not afraid to take chances. I was so mesmerized by the Cinderella storyline and glamorous outfits that I took an oath that one day I will be just as skinny and chic as everyone in the movie. As I’m munching on a piece of baguette with raisin walnut cream cheese, I can’t help but think: “Am I there yet…?” LOL.

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Three of my favorite looks in the film

Nevertheless, there were so many beautiful outfits in the movie and Andy’s style was a perfect example for someone with a slightly bigger frame. As a 5’7 Asian girl with a closet overflowed with classic black and white pieces, I can only say: “I bow to you, Patricia Field (costume designer for The Devil Wears Prada)”.

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Miranda Priestly – what every girl in fashion aspires to be and every girl’s worst nightmare, but being admired and feared at the same time is what’s important, isn’t it?
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Revelation of Andy Sachs after sleeping with her longtime idol

Stay tuned, lovelies! I’ll be back (in my Terminator voice).